The world's most in-depth and scientific reviews of outdoor gear

Eddie Bauer Women's Sun Valley Down Jacket Review

A budget friendly jacket what will keep you looking good, dry and warm all winter long.
Best Buy Award
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Price:  $230 List | $167.40 at Amazon
Pros:  Budget-friendly, warm, water-resistant, form fitting, faux fur ruff, lots of colors
Cons:  Runs small, short sleeves, no interior pocket
Manufacturer:   Eddie Bauer
By Liz Williamson ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Nov 12, 2018
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75
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#8 of 18
  • Warmth - 30% 7
  • Weather Resistance - 25% 8
  • Comfort - 20% 7
  • Style - 20% 8
  • Durability - 5% 7

Our Verdict

Eddie Bauer hit the nail on the head with the Sun Valley Down Jacket. This stylish, water-resistant parka won't break the bank. It's insulated with 650 fill down and does a great job keeping us comfortable in the cold. When wearing it, we have no trouble being outside when temperatures started to drop. Though it's only water-resistant, we are impressed by how it handles wet weather. The jacket's above-average warmth and weather protection combine with durable construction and versatile style to provide a great value. That's why the Sun Valley wins our best buy on a budget award.

If you want a warmer but still affordable winter jacket, consider the Marmot Montreaux. If you're willing to throw down the big bucks look at the Editors' Choice winning Canada Goose Kensington Parka. If you need waterproof, go straight to the waterproof Patagonia Tres Down Parka.


Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

Performance Comparison


Insulated with just the right amount of 650 fill down  cold weather didn't stand a chance against this stylish and cozy winter jacket. The hood and faux fur ruff add extra warmth and protection on crisp mornings or in stormy conditions.
Insulated with just the right amount of 650 fill down, cold weather didn't stand a chance against this stylish and cozy winter jacket. The hood and faux fur ruff add extra warmth and protection on crisp mornings or in stormy conditions.

Warmth


During testing, the Sun Valley's 650 fill down kept us warm when temperatures stayed around freezing. Once temperatures started to drop below that, we noticed that our arms were cold in the sleeves. This tends to be a problem with a lot of jackets.

This jacket is not as long as many of the parka's we reviewed. If you are looking for something a bit longer with more protection, check out the North Face Arctic Down Parka II.


This jacket's interior cuffs are made of soft fleece and do a great job of blocking out cold air and keeping us warm. The hood fits pretty snug, but there is just enough room for a beanie, but we like how it fits because it keeps our head warm on its own. The faux fur ruff around the hood adds bonus protection when the temperatures drop or are caught outside in the elements.

We weren't as warm in this coat as were in the Rab Deep Cover Parka, the The North Face Metropolis Down Parka II, or the Canada Goose Camp Hooded Jacket, but it was warmer than the Columbia Heavenly and Arc'teryx Darrah.

Super soft and comfortable  we loved the internal cuffs on the Sun Valley Down Parka. Despite the jacket's small fit and short sleeves  we still enjoyed this feature  especially on cold mornings.
Super soft and comfortable, we loved the internal cuffs on the Sun Valley Down Parka. Despite the jacket's small fit and short sleeves, we still enjoyed this feature, especially on cold mornings.

Weather Resistance


For a non-waterproof jacket, the Eddie Bauer does a great job of repelling water! The shell has a StormRepel® durable water-repellent (DWR) finish. When we test this jacket outside in rain and snow, we are impressed by how easily water beads up and rolls off. After an extended period in the elements, the jacket did start to saturate, but it took a lot of time and water for it to get there.

It's not as water-resistant as the waterproof Patagonia Tres Down Parka or the Fjallraven Nuuk Insulated Parka, but it did a better job than the waterproof The North Face Arrowood Triclimate and the North Face Gotham II.


The snug fitting hood works well in cold temperatures, wind, and stormy weather. The faux fur ruff does a better job at protecting our face than the Columbia Heavenly or the Arc'teryx Patera, which don't have any kind of faux fur ruff around the hood. The super cozy fleece cuffs are great, but when they get wet, it takes a while for them to dry. We liked the nylon cuffs on the KUHL Arktik Down Parka and Rab Deep Cover Parka because when they got wet, they dried a lot quicker than fleece.

We love the quality and look of the faux fur ruff around the hood. The hood fits snuggly and detaches  so does the faux fur ruff  allowing you to switch up your look.
We love the quality and look of the faux fur ruff around the hood. The hood fits snuggly and detaches, so does the faux fur ruff, allowing you to switch up your look.

Comfort


This jacket is comfortable, but it does run small. If you like to layer up in the winter or want something that is not form-fitting, consider ordering a size up. The sleeves are a bit short as well. Even with the interior sleeve cuffs, the sleeves often left our wrists cold and exposed when we reached for anything.

Still, this jacket has a few standout comfort features like fleece-lined exterior pockets, cuffs, backing on the inside. Jackets with fleece-lined pockets keep us warmer in cold weather than jackets that don't, like the Patagonia Tres Down Parka and the North Face Arrowood Triclimate Jacket.


There is also fleece on the inside of the collar, which is soft and feels nice against our chin when the jacket was zipped all the way up. In contrast, the Kuhl Arktik Down Parka has a super stiff and uncomfortable collar. Weighing in at 2.2 lbs, this jacket is lightweight, compared to the heavy, Canada Goose Kensington Parka and the Fjallraven Nuuk Insulated Parka.

Despite the snug fit, we found the Sun Valley more comfortable than the North Face Arrowood Triclimate Jacket and the Legendary Whitetails Anchorage Parka. If soft, cozy, plush down is more your idea of a cozy winter jacket, check out the our Best Buy winner, the Marmot Montreaux. The Rab Deep Cover Parka, the North Face Gotham II Hooded Down Jacket, and the Canada Goose Camp Hooded Jacket all surpassed the Sun Valley Down Jacket regarding comfort, especially if you are in the market for a jacket that is loaded with down insulation.

Stylish  form-fitting  water-resistant  and it won't break the bank? You heard us right. These are some of the many reasons why the Sun Valley Down Jacket won our Best Buy on a Budget award.
Stylish, form-fitting, water-resistant, and it won't break the bank? You heard us right. These are some of the many reasons why the Sun Valley Down Jacket won our Best Buy on a Budget award.

Style


We were turning heads left and right in the Sun Valley Down Jacket. Simple and sleek, you can wear this jacket running errands around town or out on a fancy occasion. This jacket's fabric has a subtle, iridescent sheen, due to a metallic cross-dyeing process, and we totally loved it. There are also eight color options to choose from. The exterior fabric is also great at repelling dirt and staying clean, unlike the exterior fabric on coats like the Arc'teryx Darrah.


This jacket has a form-fitting look, especially when compared to the almost baggy Fjallraven Nuuk Insulated Parka, Columbia Heavenly, and Canada Goose Shelburne Parka. There isn't a cinched waist, but we don't find it necessary, because of how well it fits. The hood has a faux fur ruff and we like how it almost had a tint of silver in it. That complements the color options, as well, as the silver zippers on the exterior of the jacket.

This jacket is form-fitting and looks great from all angles. Keep in mind that it does run small. Consider ordering a size up.
This jacket is form-fitting and looks great from all angles. Keep in mind that it does run small. Consider ordering a size up.

Durability


The jacket's outer shell is mainly polyester, and it's more durable than we expected. During a couple of months that we tested this jacket, we didn't notice any of the exterior stitching coming undone. We didn't run into trouble with any of the zippers either.


Overall jackets like the Fjallraven Nuuk Insulated Parka, the North Face Arctic Parka II, the Canada Goose Kensington and Shelburne Parka seem more durable. But the Sun Valley surpasses jackets with lighter nylon shells like the North Face Gotham II.

Fleece lined pockets for the win! A great hand-warming feature that not every jacket offers.
Fleece lined pockets for the win! A great hand-warming feature that not every jacket offers.

Features


This jacket lacks features compared to the Canada Goose Kensington or Shelburn Parkas, or the Kuhl Arktik Down Parka — but it has just the right number for its budget-friendly price.

There are four exterior pockets. The two hand pockets have super cozy fleece lined pockets and zippers; then there's a zippered chest pocket and a sleeve pocket that is secured with a snap. We would like to see an interior media pocket in this jacket, but life's hard sometimes. We love the soft fleece collar, removable hood with a faux fur ruff, and fleece lining in the back of the jacket.

Best Applications


This is a great winter jacket for someone living in a cold climate, whether it be in Lake Tahoe or Philadelphia. It also stands up remarkably well in wet weather, considering it is only water-resistant. This makes it appropriate for a wide range of climates and winter applications.

Subtle soft features like fleece in the collar stood out on cold days when we had to have the jacket zipped all the way up.
Subtle soft features like fleece in the collar stood out on cold days when we had to have the jacket zipped all the way up.

Value


With a price tag of $230, this jacket stole the show in terms of value and won our Best Buy on a Budget award! There are a lot of factors that go into deciding what makes a jacket worthy of a Best Buy Award. Some budget-friendly jackets like the Legendary Whitetails Anchorage Parka and the Columbia Heavenly have only one high-quality and budget-friendly feature, the Sun Valley has many. It is highly water-resistant, stylish, form-fitting, and is a great price. It's also a high-quality coat. Eddie Bauer did a great job manufacturing this jacket.

Conclusion


We are impressed with the Eddie Bauer Sun Valley. Besides running a bit small, this jacket has many great qualities. It doesn't have as many features as, the Editors' Choice winner, the Canada Goose Kensington Parka. And it isn't as warm as our Best Buy winner, the Marmot Montreaux, but it's a great jacket for someone on a budget.


Liz Williamson